“And in the same region there were shepherds out in the field, keeping watch over their flock by night. And an angel of the Lord appeared to them…”
Have you ever felt like an outcast? An outsider? Not part of the “cool” crowd? Rejected? Someone that nobody really gives a thought about?
Welcome to the world of a shepherd in “Bible” days. They were the group of people that no one ever talked about – except derisively… or as the brunt of a joke.
Yet, here they are… center stage in the Christmas story.
Think about it. God could have sent the angels to any group of people. The rich. The powerful. The influential. The “movers and shakers” in society.
After all, the angel carried the greatest news ever uttered – the ultimate news in all of human history. Why not share the greatest news with the greatest of people – people who could take that news and put some real societal weight behind it… people who already had a “voice” in their communities, and in their world?
But God chose to show up and share His most important of news with the least important people of all. He took notice of the most non-descript… and inscripted them into His inner circle – shared His best with those (whom society deemed) the “worst.”
And in one earth-shattering moment God revealed His heart for those who never get “a fair shake” in this world. And He established forever that God considers the weak and “worthless” as absolutely worthy of His attention and love.
The apostle reminds us that God is just that way…
In case you may not have noticed, God doesn’t see things the way this world does. And He has a real Heart for the weak, down-trodden, and neglected in this world.
If there is one aspect of Jesus’ ministry that sticks out above all others it is His Heart for “the harrassed and helpless” and the “broken and fettered” of the world.
What God did, we (most likely) would have never done. We would have sought out the “difference-makers,” the most influential influencers… and shared our message with them. But God looked… saw a bunch of rejects and outcasts… and sent His angel to give them the wonderful news of the Messiah’s long-awaited birth.
This brings so much hope to us all. It sure seems that there are a whole lot more of the “nobodies” than the “somebodies” in this world.
And if God is telling us anything in the Christmas story… it is that all the “nobodies” are “somebodies” to Him – and they are the ones who are always near and dear to His heart.